Corporate Social Responsibility in Contemporary China

Corporate Social Responsibility in Contemporary China

Corporations, Globalisation and the Law series

Jingchen Zhao

China’s recent economic transformation and integration into the world economy has coincided with increasing pressure for corporate law reform to make corporate social responsibility (CSR) integral to business and management strategy in China. This timely book critically analyses contemporary notions of CSR in China, discussing theory and practice alongside legal responses in this emerging field.

Chapter 5: Stakeholders' interests and legitimacy analysis of corporate social responsibility in China

Jingchen Zhao

Subjects: asian studies, asian law, business and management, corporate social responsibility, law - academic, asian law, corporate law and governance


With certain exceptions, corporate social responsibility (CSR) has always been approached from disciplines other than that of law. However, it is argued that even though CSR ostensibly involves doing more than the law requires, CSR seems to function as soft or informal law and to be based on a set of fundamental principles of commercial and business law. The substance of CSR can always be embedded in the regulations and laws in the abstract and statutory sense. The corporate objectives are always enshrined in the purpose of establishing corporations within corporate governance codes, international corporate governance principles, corporate laws and securities regulations. Governments make use of law to encourage corporations to take corporate actions towards more socially responsible ones by refereeing international law, regulatory standards, and recommendations for supra-national organizations.

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